John Dillon

Senior Reporter, New England News Collaborative

A veteran Vermont reporter, John joined VPR in 2001. Previously, John was a staff writer for the Sunday Times Argus and the Sunday Rutland Herald, responsible for breaking stories and in-depth features on local issues. He has also served as Communications Director for the Vermont Health Care Authority and Bureau Chief for UPI in Montpelier. John was honored with two regional Edward R. Murrow Awards in 2007 for his reporting on VPR. He was the lead reporter for a VPR series on climate change that in 2008 won a national Edward R. Murrow award for continuing coverage. In 2009, John's coverage of an asbestos mine in northern Vermont was recognized with a regional investigative reporting award from the Radio-Television News Directors Association.

 

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A shot of Buck Lake in Woodbury Vermont on a blue sky day.
Tom Rogers / Vermont Fish & Wildlife, courtesy

A state-run summer camp is underway in Woodbury, where up to 60 kids a week experience a hands-on, outdoor learning environment.

Auditor Doug Hoffer says it's hard to tell which Agriculture Agency programs are most effective at cutting phosphorus pollution from farms.
Jane Lindholm / VPR

Vermont’s state auditor says a taxpayer-funded program to reduce phosphorus pollution from farms needs better monitoring and data collection to show what measures are most effective.

John Dillon / VPR

A longtime Vermont resident is scheduled to be deported Sunday back to his native Kenya. His family says they are the victims of President Trump’s “zero tolerance” policy on immigration issues.

The emerald ash borer, an invasive insect, kills over 99 percent of ash trees. It's been found in Montpelier, and officials are planning a response.
U.S. Department of Agriculture

The invasive emerald ash borer has been found in Montpelier. City officials are taking steps to protect some trees along city streets, but ultimately they say most of Montpelier’s ash trees will die.

Eric Howe, director of the Lake Champlain Basin Program, says the lake will take time to recover from years phosphorus pollution even as it faces new threats such as climate change.
John Dillon / VPR

A new report on the health of Lake Champlain says polluted areas are not generally getting worse, but the lake isn't showing many signs of recovery from decades of phosphorous runoff either.

Alexandra Kosiba, a UVM scientist, documented the recovery of red spruce trees in the Northeast after decline due to acid rain.
Courtesy / Alexandra Kosiba

A University of Vermont researcher says red spruce forests in the Northeast that were once damaged by acid rain are recovering, thanks to stronger pollution controls.

EPA Region 1 Administrator Alexandra Dunn says Vermont still has to come up with a long-term funding plan to clean up Lake Champlain.
John Dillon / VPR

Lake Champlain will get a $4 million increase in federal clean-up funds this year. But the Environmental Protection Agency says Vermont still needs to develop a funding source of its own.

The spent nuclear fuel at Vermont Yankee is being stored in dry casks on the property in Vernon.
Courtesy Vermont Yankee

Why would anyone want to buy a closed nuclear power plant, along with its long legacy of radioactive waste?

A stretch of road with a mini cell tower on a utility pole that a car is driving by.
Howard Weiss-Tisman / VPR/File

A company struggling to provide cell phone service in rural Vermont has asked state utility regulators for emergency help, because one of its key provider has cut off access to most of its network.

Lila Carleton says she hit a wal around mile 18, but got a second wind.
Noah Villamarin-Cutter / VPR

Among the thousands of runners in Sunday’s Vermont City Marathon, one competitor stood out, not for the swiftness of her time, but because she was the youngest runner in the field.

Elmore State Park, seen here in 2015.
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR/file

This holiday weekend marks the traditional full opening of Vermont’s 55 state parks.

Doug Brown and his brother Roger, right, operate Slopeside Syrup in Richmond. They're challenging a proposed federal label that would say maple syrup has "added sugar."
John Dillon / VPR

Maple syrup producers take pride in their pure, natural product. So when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration proposed new labels to say maple syrup contains “added sugar,” producers fought back.

Auditor Doug Hoffer says it's hard to tell which Agriculture Agency programs are most effective at cutting phosphorus pollution from farms.
Jane Lindholm / VPR

A June 1 deadline is nearing for dairy farmers to sign up for a safety net insurance program that could help as milk prices remain low.

Fish and Wildlife technician Taylor Booth, left, and biologist Chet Mackenzie measure a male sturgeon caught in the Winooski River.
John Dillon / VPR

An ancient fish still swims in Lake Champlain. Biologists and anglers are seeing more giant, long-lived lake sturgeon here, even as an environmental group calls for greater protection for the species around the country.

The Public Utility Commission held the final hearing on the sale of the Vermont Yankee plant as a witness testified by video the deal still is risky for the public and th environment.
John Dillon / VPR

Hearings on the sale of the closed Vermont Yankee nuclear plant ended on Monday as a witness for an environmental group testified the deal lacks protections for the public.

The federal office that sets milk prices for the Northeast recently allowed milk to be dumped at the farm.
VPR/Ric Cengeri

In yet another sign of the chronic milk glut that’s forced down prices paid to farmers, the federal government has allowed Northeast dairy co-ops to dump milk if they can’t find a market.

Sheldon dairy farmer Bill Rowell was in the Statehouse recently working against a provision that would allow the public to sue farmers over environmental violations.
John Dillon / VPR

A bill that would allow citizens to go to court to enforce state water pollution laws is facing fierce opposition from Vermont farmers.

The farm community says now is not the time to expose farmers to more financial or legal risk.

Blue-green algae blooms, like this one photographed in the summer of 2014 in Lake Champlain, have many in the state concerned. A new draft plan proposes funding sources for water cleanup efforts.
Taylor Dobbs / VPR FILE

The Vermont House on Friday advanced a bill that raises taxes to fund clean water programs.

Solar trackers installed in South Burlington in a field on a cloudy day are pictured in this July 27, 2011
Toby Talbot / Associated Press

The state board that regulates utilities has set a lower rate for new net-metering projects.

Warden Arnold Magoon, shown here on duty before his death in 1978, will be honored Saturday by the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife.
Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department, Provided

This month marks the 40th anniversary of the death of Vermont game warden Arnold Magoon, who was killed in the line of duty.

The Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department will honor Magoon on Saturday by placing a memorial on his family's property in Brandon.

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